Posts Tagged ‘Black & White’

Making Black & White Photos “POP” Using Photoshop

Posted in Photography, Photoshop

Above, I have a photo of my neighbor’s cat. I turned it into a black and white photo, but it’s not quite right. It needs a little “pop” to make it more interesting. There are a few simple ways to do this without getting too crazy. The first way is very easy. First I’ll go to Image, Adjustments, Exposure: Here the Exposure dialog box comes up: I grab the slider that’s called Offset and bring it slowly to the left. You can see the darks in the image getting pronounced. Then I go to the Gamma Correction and bring that to the left just a little bit. Already you should see a difference. Then I go to the Exposure slider and bring that to the right to brighten the photo. Here are the settings I used for this image: Look at the before and after to see the difference: Here I’ll use a different method, with a shot of my family room that I turned black and white: First I’ll go to Image, Adjustments, Selective Color: Once the Selective Color dialog box comes up, I go to the top of the box and pick the color black: The only slider I touch is the last one, the black slider. In this case I’ll make it a +10: Then I’ll pick white from the color selections and again I’ll only use the black slider. The white slider I’ll bring to the left, making the whites whiter. For this I use a -8. Then I’ll click OK: Next I’ll go to Image, Adjustments, Brightness/Contrast: With the Brightness/Contrast dialog box open, I’ll push both sliders to the right. Try not to have a heavy hand. Just a little should do it. For this image I use a +11 for both brightness and contrast. Then I’ll click OK: Here are the before and after pictures: Try both methods and see which one works best for you. Remember every picture is different. The numbers that work for me might be different for you. So, play around with the sliders. Have fun and keep playing with Photoshop.

Bringing Color Back into Black & White, from Original Color Photo

Posted in Photography, Photoshop

Above is the result of this tutorial. Here’s an image that I took of a horse at Muscoot Farm in Westchester. In this example I’m going to make the image black and white and then bring the horse back to color. Now I’m going to make a copy of the background layer. So I hit CTRL-J on the keyboard. Then the copy layer will say Layer 1. I always name the layers. This way when I have a lot of layers in a big project I won’t get confused. I’ll double click the word “Layer 1” to rename it. Here, I’ll name this layer “Horse”:     The next thing I’ll do is put a mask on this layer, so that I can paint the color right back into the horse easily. I’ll click on the mask icon at the bottom of the layers palette: Next, I’ll make sure that the image of the horse is selected in the layer to make the image black & white: Ok, now I’m ready to make the image black & white. I’ll go to Image on the menu at the top of the screen, and drop down the menu. I’ll then select Adjustments / Black & White: In this case, when I change the image to black and white I’m not going to worry about how the horse comes out. I’ll be bringing the horse back to color. I’m just going to concentrate on the background. I want to make the background as dark and dramatic as possible. Here are the settings I used, not worrying about the horse at all. Then I click OK: Now I’ll click on the mask to make it active: Here’s the image in process. I usually start at the center and work my way out. I take my time and zoom in to the outer edges of an object so that I can see the details when I work. Remember, painting with black reveals and painting with white conceals: Sometimes it helps to see exactly what the mask is doing. You can hold the ALT key on your keyboard and click on the mask at the same time to see the mask in action. Hold the ALT key and click on the mask icon again to bring it back to its original state: Here’s the finished image: Have fun!

HDR Color to HDR Black & White

Posted in HDR, Photoshop

Above is an example of a black and white HDR image that I’ll show you how to create from an original color image. HDR images can look really good if they’re done right. Some HDR images look great when they’re converted to black and white. I don’t think it works for all HDR images so you’ll have to experiment. Experimenting can be a lot of fun. Here’s an example of the Croton Dam in Westchester, NY. Some people I know like the color version better and others like it in black and white. It’s all a matter of taste. If you like your end results, then that’s what matters. This is how I did the black and white conversion in Photoshop CS3. First bring the image into Photoshop. Then go to Image / Adjustments / Black & White. Here the Black and White dialog box opens up. There are red, yellow, green, cyan, blue and magenta sliders. Slide the sliders back and forth to see how it will affect your image. Every image is different and it’s up to your taste how you want the end result. When I decide that I’m happy with the results, I click OK. These are the settings I used for this image: I’m not finished yet. At this point I like to go to the Image / Adjustments / Brightness/Contrast settings: I don’t touch the brightness slider. I just bring up the contrast to about +20, depending on the image. Here’s the end result: Here’s another example with a different image. Instead of leaving this image as a black and white, I gave it a sepia “tint”. In the Black and White dialog box, there’s a check box at the bottom that says “Tint”. Click that check box on, then click OK. Here are the images from color, to black and white, to sepia tint: Here’s one more example of color to black and white:
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